Will a data driven approach replace RAMS and conventional safety engineering?
10 Jun 2016
If one looks through the railway safety and reliability standards, EN50126 / EN51028/9 https://www.linkedin.com/groups/4985242 and the recommended activity at each life-cycle stage it will be seen that nearly all the items are data driven. Using Big Data and Machine Learning we could eliminate a lot of the work done now by safety engineers. Of course you would have to follow a more formal system engineering approach to ensure that the data was created and logged properly but requirements management databases like DOORS and system modelling using for example SysML (Systems Modeling Language) would enable that to happen couple with BIM (Business Information Modelling). BIM means that railway design and development is properly documented through the use of CAD.
The diagram above shows factors affecting RAMS and they are all based upon some form of data either structure/unstructured and real time/historical. They all provide management information that must be acted upon by using some form of decision logic. All of which is amenable to replication by an intelligent machine.
I conclude that RAMS is a now a past-its-sell by date of a commodity. The Fault Tree below might soon be redundant replaced by real data and modelling.